Making Disciples Through the Arts

Nia Hendricks
Calvary Christian Academy Theatre Director, Tracy McCoy, discusses the value students receive by participating in Fine Arts courses and programs like theatre.

How does the Calvary Christian Academy Theatre Department build up students spiritually, academically, and socially?

McCoy: In the Theatre Department we really spur on teamwork and unity, and we try to encourage the students to display Christ-like qualities by emulating them ourselves. We always practice finding the redemptive quality in all of our story-telling. In addition, many students have a desire to perform at a professional and competitive level, so we encourage them as Christian artists to strive for excellence so that they may connect with others outside of the church and further God’s kingdom.

The greatest success stories are the ones where a parent shares with me that they’ve seen their child’s disposition brighten and social skills blossom.

Why do you feel the Arts are important?
McCoy: The Arts help students establish confidence, self-esteem, and a sense of self-worth. I’ve seen students with very little “natural” performing abilities thrive in theatre—not because of how well they did in a performance, but because of the experience, community, and personal growth that ensued. I’ve heard wonderful success stories of my students going on to perform at prestigious theatres, production companies, in movies and television, and even Broadway Shows. To me, the greatest success stories are the ones where a parent shares with me that they’ve seen their child’s disposition brighten and social skills blossom.
Do you have a recent example of how the Lord has used students for ministry?
McCoy: Our High School Thespian Troupe recently competed at the District Competition and were one of the highest overall ranking schools that will now be going on to State Competition. While there, our students were able to show the love of Christ to other public school students in the way that they competed, conducted themselves, and showed support for their competitors. One of our students won a Spontaneous Improvisation competition. Instead of keeping the prize for himself, he opted to take it over to the runner-up and share the prize with them. It was completely unexpected by the other school and really made an impact, not only to that troupe but to all of the adults that were there as sponsors and parents.

 The confidence that students build also spills into every aspect of their lives.

What kind of skills does the Drama Club sharpen for students?

McCoy: Many aspects of productions are completely student-led, so students get experience in makeup design, choreography, graphic design, and more. Obviously, their performance skills are sharpened as well, but the confidence that students build also spills into every aspect of their lives. I believe Theatre training is something that can benefit every student, no matter what field of study they ultimately pursue.

What upcoming Calvary Christian Academy performances can we look forward to?

McCoy: The Calvary Christian Academy Middle School Theatre will be performing Fiddler on the Roof Jr. on February 9th & 10th, and the High School will perform the musical Les Miserables on April 27 & 28, 2018 at the Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale Theatre!

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